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    New York in December: the best events between Christmas and New Year

    Who I am
    Martí Micolau

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    There are those who love it, and then they will love it forever. And who hates it. And then he will perhaps learn to appreciate it, but he will never love it completely.

    “And is New York the most beautiful city in the world? Perhaps. No urban night is like night in New York. I looked at the city from the top of the skyscrapers. And it is then that the great buildings lose their reality and replace it with magical powers, becoming so immaterial that it is as if only the illuminated windows existed ". Thus spoke Ezra Pound, with full knowledge of the facts. Because New York is always beautiful.

    However, in the month of December, it is cloaked in a particular, almost magical atmosphere, which is not experienced at any other time of the year. A bit like everywhere, one could argue. But no. Because the Big Apple, the “city that never sleeps”, gives even more of its best, if possible, on the occasion of the Christmas holidays. And reaching it in terms of events, lights, atmosphere is simply impossible.


    • December climate in New York
    • Major events of December in New York
      • Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes
      • Hanukkah (22-30 dicembre)
      • Winter Village al Bryant Park
      • Hello Panda Festival al Citi Field
      • The best Christmas lights in Dyker Heights
      • Christmas Show al St. George Theatre
      • Winter Lantern Festival allo Snug Harbor
      • Christmas Tree Lightning al Rockefeller Center
      • New Year's Eve

    December climate in New York

    Even as regards the temperature, the metropolis often knows how to amaze. This does not mean that the climate in New York is warm, quite the opposite. However, you can come across mild days (with temperatures up to 8-9 ° C), and not too windy (walking the streets of New York with the wind, especially if it is freezing, can be a real challenge. requires the right clothing). Just as it is very likely that the temperature is around 2-3 ° C.

    Sometimes, and I hope you never experience it directly, it can happen that you come across almost polar temperatures, with sharp sharp peaks down to -15 / 16 ° C. Usually, however, the month of December in New York is not too different from ours, but it is much more likely that it will snow. And, in this case, the city will seem even more amazing to you.

    Major events of December in New York

    Concerts, events, plays, sparkling lights and festivals. Cosmopolitan celebrations and winter villages, fireworks and street art shows. In New York, especially in December, something always happens. Impossible to get bored. Unlikely to stand still. It is inadmissible to go to bed early. Here is a selection of the best events in New York to mark on your agenda and not to be missed. For no reason in the world.

    Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes

    One of the most famous and anticipated musicals of the year, held at the Radio City Hall in New York, this show that lasts about an hour and a half sees the succession of over 140 artists who perform in dance, singing and funny gags. The stars of the musical are, without a doubt, the girls of the dance group The Rockettes. But equally unmissable is the parade of wooden soldiers.

    For over 80 years, this show has attracted musical fans from all over America, and from abroad, in a riot of sparkling costumes, Christmas lights in profusion and an exceptional location that, over the decades, has hosted artists of the caliber of Franck Sinatra, Celine Dion and Josè Carreras. The show is repeated several times a day. The cost of the ticket starts from $ 79 depending on the chosen area.

    Check availability for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular

    • Where: 1260 Avenue of the Americas, New York City.

    Hanukkah (22-30 dicembre)

    Even the Jewish Festival of Light is particularly felt in the metropolis, so much so that there are numerous events and demonstrations that are held almost everywhere and that also attract simple curious and lay people. The two busiest locations for the Hanukkah party in New York are the Manhattan Plaza and the Brooklyn Grand Army Plaza which host the challenge of the World's Largest Hanukkah Menorah.

    Two huge nine-branched golden candelabra, over 9 meters high and weighing more than 1 ton, are lit at 17.30 pm on the day of the holiday and then again on Friday (at 15.30 pm) and Saturday (at 19 pm). On other evenings, the candlesticks show their luminous grandeur at 18pm. In addition to the lighting, which deserves to be admired, the organizers hold a large pre-lighting concert on December 22, while all other evenings are enlivened with music and distribution of potato pancakes.

    • Where: Manhattan Plaza e Brooklyn Grand Army Plaza, New York City.

    Winter Village al Bryant Park

    A wonder for young and old, Bryant Park is one of New York's best-loved Christmas attractions. Ice skating rink (free), outdoor shops where you can find gifts, souvenirs, clothing and handicrafts, kiosks selling delicacies. But not only.

    Here you can meet Santa Claus, take a picture with him, listen to Christmas carols and stop for an excellent dinner in one of the internal restaurants. The Winter Village is open until March 1st, while the stalls are available until January 5th. The hours are: Monday to Friday, from 11 to 21, Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 21.

    • Where: Behind the New York Public Library in Midtown Manhattan, between 40th & 42nd Street & Fifth & Sixth Avenue, New York City.

    Hello Panda Festival al Citi Field

    Hello Panda is a fun festival that celebrates the Christmas season with different attractions such as a light exhibit consisting of over 120 lanterns, live entertainment, modern art exhibits, interactive games, artist performances and much more.

    A festival that celebrates Chinese lantern culture and lasts about 52 days, until the end of January. Furthermore, at the disposal of visitors there are over 150 stalls offering delicacies and take-away dishes from cuisines from all over the world, in addition to the inevitable and traditional Christmas market, with handicrafts, sculptures, art objects and paintings. The Hello Panda Festival runs until January 26 (but the date may vary from year to year), every day from 17pm to 22pm.

    • Where: 123-01 Roosevelt Avenue, Queens, New York City.

    The best Christmas lights in Dyker Heights

    An entire neighborhood dedicated to Christmas, Dyker Heights is the quintessence of lovers of sparkling Christmas atmospheres. Here, in fact, private homes are decorated in a scenographic way, following very specific themes, created by the best light-designers in New York. An unmissable stop for those who love Christmas lights. For more information, read the article dedicated to how to organize a Dyker Heights itinerary.

    • Where: 11th to 13th Avenue (also called Dyker Heights Blvd) and 83rd to 86th Street in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, New York City.

    Christmas Show al St. George Theatre

    Now in its sixteenth edition, this show, which lasts approximately 2 hours, is suitable for everyone and mixes songs and dance in a fun way. Over 100 volunteer artists entertain viewers by telling the story of a grandmother reading a Christmas fairy tale to her grandchildren, explaining to them why the holiday season is so important and special, especially to experience as a family. The fantastic “journey” of the representation ranges from the North Pole to Times Square, up to the magical rainbow room, ending with the Living Nativity.

    All the songs proposed are part of the great Christmas classics: from White Christmas to Let it Snow. The show is offered on 14 and 15 December, in two tranches (15 pm and 19 pm). The cost of the ticket starts from 20 $.

    • Where: 35 Hyatt Street, Staten Island, New York City.

    Winter Lantern Festival allo Snug Harbor

    Until January 12, the Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Staten Island Botanical Garden becomes a fairy world of weird and bizarre lights, enlivened by cultural performances, interactive exhibits and recreated characters using color lanterns (over 1000), such as dragons , crocodiles, giant pandas.

    Many performances scheduled: magic, Tibetan dances, contortionism and much more. The Winter Lantern Festival is open from Wednesday to Sunday, with different times depending on the day. The entrance ticket costs $ 23 for adults and $ 15 for children. For more information visit the official website.

    Christmas Tree Lightning al Rockefeller Center

    It is the ceremony par excellence that starts Christmas in New York. 25 meters high, adorned with 45 colored lights, embellished with a giant star studded with Swarowski, the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree is a must for anyone in New York in December. Turned on for the first time on December 4th, it can be admired in all its beauty every evening, from 17.30 pm to 23.30 pm, except on Christmas Eve, when it will remain on for 24 hours. The tree can be admired up close every day, from 18pm to midnight. Admission is free.

    • Where: 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York City.

    There are, then, other locations that deserve to be included in the Christmas tour. As the Bryant Park, which has its own tree lighting ceremony (the Tree Lighting Skate-tacular) on December 5, or the Washington Square Park fir, whose traditional lighting dates back to 1924 and is accompanied by Christmas carols on December 4 .

    Ad Astoria, then, for about 7 years, an event dedicated to lighting the Christmas tree has been held: every 8 December, at the Astoria Park, the families of the neighborhood gather to take pictures with Santa Claus, taste fantastic pretzels (for free) , and to shop in the traditional Christmas market.

    Finally, also on the day of the Immaculate Conception, the lights of the imposing tree of Park Avenue. A tradition that began in 1945 to also celebrate the end of the Second World War, and is still very much felt by the inhabitants of the neighborhood and beyond.

    New Year's Eve

    Finally, among the unmissable events, the New Year cannot be missing, which in New York is a real institution. One of the most loved locations by New Yorkers, but not only, is certainly Times Square, with its brilliant sphere (the Eve Ball) which slowly descends towards the crowd. And during his descent, everyone, without exception, express wishes.

    Alternatively, you can think of spending the last night of the year in Central Park, thus witnessing the famous fireworks show that greet the new year, in a less hectic and noisy environment than Times Square, but not for this less suggestive.

    Once the fireworks are over, then, the more sporty will be able to decide to participate in the famous Midnight Run, the race that begins at midnight and accompanies the participants inside Central Park. Finally, there are countless parties that animate the Big Apple from north to south, from west to east. Many of these are quite expensive, but definitely worth it.

    One for all? The exclusive party that is organized every year in the Freedom Tower, the tallest skyscraper in all of New York. It goes without saying that, from the summit, the spectacle of the metropolis being illuminated with lights is truly unforgettable

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